Friday, April 30, 2021

Atlantic Seaboard residents to stop drinking tap water

The City of Cape Town has advised residents in the Camps Bay, Sea Point and Fresnaye areas to refrain from drinking tap water until further notice.

The City’s Water and Sanitation Department, in consultation with the City’s Health Department, is investigating complaints related to an earthy metallic taste in the municipal tap water along the Atlantic Seaboard

‘’The City has since been strategically flushing the system, as well as undertaking intensive water sampling to identify any possible non-compliance.’’ It said in a statement on Thursday.

Mobile standpipes have been installed along Beach Road this evening for residents to collect water for domestic consumption, if necessary.

 

They are located as follows:

• Corner of Arthur’s Road

• Corner of Milton Road

• Corner of Marais Road

• Corner of Norfolk Road

 

The City advised residents to not boil the tap water and drink it.

It recommended that affected Capetonians rather collect water from standpipes provided to be safe.

 

PICTURE: Pixabay

Done By: Mitchum George

Parents need to protect children from cyberbullying, says CSIR

The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) have urged the adults to play an active role in protecting young people from cyberbullying.

The CSIR defines cyberbullying as ‘’the use of electronic communication by one party to: harass, threaten, intimidate, humiliate and stalk the other.’’

According to the organisation, one in three parents globally has reported that their child was bullied online.

In 2018, 54% of South African parents reported that they knew of a child who was cyberbullied.

Senior researcher at CSIR, Sipho Ngobeni, cited examples of the recent incident involving Limpopo pupil, Lufuno Mavhunga who committed suicide after she was filmed being bullied and assaulted by another school girl.

Other pupils watched on and laughed as Mavhunga was repeatedly slapped outside the premises of the Mbilwi Secondary School.

According to the research shared with the media, Instagram accounts for 42% of bullying that occurs online, while Facebook accounts for 37%, 31% occurs on Snapchat, 12% on WhatsApp, 10% on YouTube and 9% on Twitter.

Statistics show that about 41% of kids develop social anxiety after being bullied, 37% develop depression, 26% have suicidal thoughts, 25% engage in self-harm, 24% stop using social media altogether, 20% start skipping classes, 14% develop eating disorder while 9% begin to abuse alcohol and drugs.

“In addition, educators do not know when and how to intervene in online behaviours that occur away from school, but still involve their learners. Law enforcement is often also hesitant to get involved, unless there is clear evidence,” Ngobeni said.

The CSIR advises parents to reinforce positive morals and values, and educate their children about appropriate online behaviour, such as the use of account privacy settings, reporting the matter to the police and providing unconditional support to their children should they experience cyberbullying.

 

 PICTURE: CSIR


Done By: Mitchum George

Cape Town Speaker retires after 45 years of service

City of Cape Town speaker, Dirk Smit, announced during Thursday’s full council meeting, his retirement as Speaker and councillor after 45 years in public service.

Smit served as a councillor and then speaker of the City of Cape Town since 2006.

He has also served as chairperson of the Salga’s Speakers’ Forum of the Western Cape, since May 2011 up until now.

DA Western Cape Acting Provincial Leader, Albert Fritz bid farewell to Smit and thanked him for his service.

‘’Dirk has performed his duties with distinction and he leaves behind large shoes for his predecessors to fill.’’

PICTURE: CoCT - Dirk Smit with his wife, Elna.


 

Done By: Mitchum George

Charges dropped against foreign national for Cape town fires

 The charge of arson against a foreign national, arrested in connection with the Cape Town fires, at the slopes of Devils Peak, last week, has been dropped

Instead, he is now facing a lesser charge of contravening the National Environmental Management Act for living in the Table Mountain National Park.

National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Eric Ntabazalila confirmed the charge of arson had been changed for 35 year old Fredrick Mhangazo. The man from Tanzania was said to have been homeless at the time of his arrest, on Wednesday afternoon the Cape Town Magistrate's Court released him on R500 bail.

Previously police spokesperson Andrè Traut confirmed his arrest on Sunday night at around 8.10pm in Philip Kgosana Drive, by law enforcement officers, and charged with arson.

Six University of Cape Town (UCT) buildings sustained significant structural damage and a number of other buildings and facilities sustained minor damages. The case has been postponed to 18 June for further investigation and for witness statements to be obtained. 


By Everngelista Muza

36 year old man sentenced 20 years imprisonment for a dating scam worth R1m

 

A 36 year old man has been sentenced 20 years for running an online dating scam in which he duped vulnerable women out of thousands of rands.

The Bellville Commercial Crimes Court sentenced a fraudster for duping vulnerable women out of thousands of rands.

In a statement Spokesperson for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) Eric Ntabazalila said 36 year old Chinonso Pascal Eze was convicted for23 counts of fraud and nine counts of money laundering.

On Thursday he entered into a plea and sentencing agreement with the state and confessed to being part of a syndicate which operated an online dating scam.

The court heard that Eze and members of the syndicate reached out to victims through dating sites. He groomed women, gaining their trust, and then requested money from them in “emergencies” while portraying the image of wealthy man who could easily pay back the money. The syndicate created fake dating profiles under the names Marcos Ivan, Michael Brandy Smart and Craig Thompson.

In total, Eze swindled his victims out of R1 035 030.


By Everngelista Muza

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Social Development MEC urges parents who struggles with drug-addiction children to seek help

The Western Cape’s Social Development Department have budgeted R102 million for substance abuse programmes and services.

In the latest report compiled by the South African Community Epidemiology Network on Drug Use, it was revealed that Tik continues to be the most widely used drug in the Western Cape, followed by cannabis, alcohol and heroin, which together comprise 89% of all admissions to our treatment centres.

https://bushradionews.blogspot.com/2021/03/tik-is-most-used-drug-in-western-cape.html

Social Development MEC Sharna Fernandez, is calling on parents dealing with issues relating to substance abuse within the home, to seek assistance from her Department.

“Confronting a child about getting support for his/her addiction can be a daunting task. Children with substance use disorders (SUD) may become aggressive or even abusive if they feel that their parent(s) is betraying them by exposing their addiction to a school teacher, social worker or a community member,” said Fernandez.

She added: “It is important to remember that one’s sense of reality becomes distorted due to substance abuse – hiding the true impact of the illness. Many children may have no idea of the effects of their drug use, on their parents, family members and communities. They may be in denial so much that they don’t realise how chaotic their lives have become.’’

‘’I wish to remind every parent struggling with a drug-addicted child that you are not alone,” Fernandez concluded.

 

PICTURE: WCG


Done By: Mitchum George

Possible strike for city firefighter following allegations of 500 being fired.

 The SA Municipal Workers Union (Samwu) says firefighters are being required to work long hours without any form of compensation.

Although City of Cape Town’s Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security, Alderman JP Smith, rejects the allegations and also denied wanting to fire 500 firefighters

The union has threatened to march to the Civic Centre on Saturday in a bid to convince City bosses to not fire more than 500 firefighters and will also march in support of decent work and working conditions.

The City said the current shift agreement, to which Samwu was a signatory, had been declared valid and binding in terms of a Labor Court judgment and remained in force until a new agreement was negotiated between the parties.

A leaked email between Samwu and a City official, said that it was willing and prepared and open to consider favorably a settlement offer and concede that the firefighters accept the sanction of a final written warning with a suspended sentence of four days’ unpaid leave.

By Everngelista Muza

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Prison break in KZN: Manhunt for 23 escapees

It’s been reported that on Wednesday morning, the police’s Jay Naicker said that 45 prisoners were being driven by two police officers when 31 prisoners awaiting trial escaped from custody in Pietermaritzburg. This comes after a group of suspects, targeting a police van for just ONE prisoner, ended up releasing dozens of felons when they attempted to hijack the vehicle. The men were in transit to Pietermaritzburg Court, before a hail of bullets stopped police officers from completing the journey.

 Police in KwaZulu-Natal are now searching for 23 awaiting trial prisoners, meanwhile 22 have been reported to have now be in police custody.

A large-scale manhunt has been reported to already be underway.

The RTC South Africa Community Group shared this update earlier on Wednesday. “Police van with prisoners hijacked by five suspects with AK47 rifles. Policemen taken hostage with prisoners. Shots were fired. Scene still active. This occurred a short while ago on Devonshire Road between Pietermaritzburg Court and New Prison. KZN Prisoners were en-route to court.”

 

By Everngelista Muza

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

J&J vaccine resumes but with changes to consent

The Johnson and Johnson Sisonke Programme to vaccinate healthcare workers as part of the first phase of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, will resume on 28 April 2021.

It was paused temporarily after six Americans suffered blot clots.

As a condition for resuming the COVID-19 vaccination trial programme, SAHPRA has added a requirement that all Sisonke participants need to be informed of the potential risk of the rare clotting disorder and therefore reconsent to participating. The revisions also pertain to the additional SAHPRA recommendation that pregnant and breastfeeding women should be excluded from the trial at this stage.

 

Health workers who have been vaccinated already

If you have already been vaccinated, you will receive an SMS with a safety update on the Johnson and Johnson vaccine.

Health workers who have a voucher but have not been vaccinated yet

Your current voucher is no longer valid. You will receive a SMS requesting you to read the new participant information and provide consent. Once you’ve consented, you will receive a new vaccine voucher. You will use this new vaccine voucher when you present for your vaccination.

Health workers who have registered but have not received a voucher or a vaccination

You will receive a SMS inviting you to the Sisonke programme. You will have to read the new participant information and provide consent. When you are eligible for your vaccination, you will receive a voucher. You will use this voucher when you present for your vaccination.

 Health workers who have not registered for the vaccine

Please register as soon as possible. You can only receive the vaccination during Phase 1 if you have registered to be part of the Sisonke Programme. If you do not register now, you will have to wait for your turn during Phase 2 and 3 roll-out. You can register here: https://vaccination.health.gov.za.

 

The updated consent form will need to be completed by all participants prior to vaccination.

 

Please note the current scheduling process is still in operation for all healthcare workers in public sector.

 

Information from: Western Cape Government Health

Abalone worth R700 000 seized in Riviersonderend

Riviersonderend police arrested two suspects on Monday for being in possession of illegal abalone.

‘’A member attached to Riviersonderend SAPS was on patrol when he noticed a suspicious vehicle, white I10 Hyundai on the N2 with two male occupants. He followed it and stopped the vehicle in town at Padloper. After the vehicle was stopped, the member approached it, introduced himself and saw black bags at the back of the vehicle.’’ said the police’s FC van Wyk.

‘’After the vehicle was stopped, the member approached it, introduced himself and saw black bags at the back of the vehicle. He searched the vehicle and found nine black bags containing unshelled abalone.’’ Van Wyk added.

The value of the 900 units of the abalone, says van Wyk, is approximately R700 000.

The two suspects aged 27 and 54 were arrested for possession of abalone, and they are due to appear in the Caledon Periodical  Court on Wednesday.

The abalone was later handed over to the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.


PICTURE: SAPS


 

Done By: Mitchum George

Freedom Day 2021


President Cyril Ramaphosa will, on Tuesday, lead the 2021 National Freedom Day celebrations, in Botshabelo, in the Free State.

This year’s commemoration marks 27 years of freedom and democracy since South Africa’s first non-racial democratic elections in 1994. The elections marked the advent of democracy after nearly four centuries of colonialism and apartheid.

This year’s theme is: “The year of Charlotte Maxeke: The meaning of freedom under COVID-19’’

According to the presidency, the President’s programme will commence with the official opening and a tour of the Charlotte Maxeke Treatment Centre followed by the formal programme where the President will address the nation.

Executive Mayor of Cape Town, Dan Plato, says citizens need to remember how far we have come.

‘’Freedom Day represents the birth of a new South Africa and hope for all the possibilities of the future. As we deal with this latest challenge to our daily lives, let us remember what was fought for and continue to  uphold those rights and civil liberties that have given us all the freedom we enjoy today.’’

‘’Now more than ever, we need compassion for our fellow Capetonians.’’ Plato added.

Western Cape Premier, Alan Winde, says more needs to be done to ensure true freedom.

 “This is a day not only to reflect on how far we have come since we came together as one nation, but also to reflect on the journey that lies ahead, and the hard work we still need to do to ensure true freedom for each and every person in our country.”

“My own key priorities are, and will always remain, to help our residents experience economic freedom, and freedom from fear for their safety.” Winde added.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

Monday, April 26, 2021

Cape Town home owner caught flushing drugs down toilet

Metro Police officers arrested a 47-year-old Ruyterwacht resident on a charge of drug dealing on Friday

According to the City of Cape Town’s Mayco member for safety and security, JP Smith, officers had a search warrant, but the man refused them entry.

‘’Officers forced their way into the house, and caught the owner flushing drugs down the toilet. They managed to recover 73 ecstasy tablets, two packets of tik and R2 690 in cash.’’

The suspect was arrested and is being held at Elsies River police station.

In an unrelated incident, an officer arrested a suspect for armed robbery and possession of an illegal firearm on Sunday.

‘’The Inspector was driving along Klipfontein Road, near Jan Smuts Drive when he spotted a minibus taking a wrong turn and two males falling out of the vehicle. The officer pursued the two men, and managed to apprehend one of them. He also recovered a 9mm firearm, with its serial number filed off.’’ Says Smith.

The man is expected to appear in court soon.

 

Done By: Mitchum George


Johnson & Johnson vaccine rollout to resume on Wednesday

Health Minister Zweli Mkhize says the Johnson & Johnson vaccination drive through the Sisonke programme, will resume on Wednesday.

The trial was paused earlier this month after 6 patients in America developed a blood clot. It has since been established that there's a one in a million chance of developing a clot after taking the vaccine.

Mkhize said this was a huge development for the country's fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The health minister added that they were now aiming to complete the vaccination of health workers with 95 sites across South Africa.

“Phase one is due to end on 16 May 2021 and we remain committed to vaccinating as many of the 1,2 million health care workers targeted as possible, despite the unforeseen interruption to our programme. The 95 sites will be published in the next issue of I Choose Vaccination Bulletin and on the Health and SA Coronavirus website.

Mkhize says those taking the vaccine should be mindful of the following side effects

“Issues of headache, dizziness, abdominal pain, vomiting… so we need people to ensure that they are always alert so that we can chat. But out of the 300,000 that have been vaccinated in SA, we haven’t had any serious symptoms.”

 

Done By: Mitchum George

Wildfire rages near Raubenheimer Dam

A wildfire is raging in the Greater Oudtshoorn Municipal area, near the Raubenheimer dam.

The wildfire was reported at around 13h25 on Sunday afternoon.

The Western Cape’s Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning MEC, Anton Bredell says the current fires will not affect the quality of the drinking water for Oudtshoorn.

“The Raubenheimer dam is the major source for drinking water for Oudtshoorn. The Oudtshoorn technical team says the fire is mostly below the catchment area and not considered to be a threat to the water supply.”

‘’The difficult terrain makes firefighting efforts more tricky but resources are on the ground and are currently being supported by several aircraft doing water bombings.’’ Bredell added.

No structural damages have been reported so far. The Oudtshoorn Fire & Rescue have also reported that there are currently no danger posed by the fires to nearby structures.

"At the moment the northern flank is contained. The helicopter and bomber are continuing with firefighting efforts," said Adel Supra-Vertue, manager for Fire, Rescue & Disaster management for the Greater Oudtshoorn.

Meanwhile, the George Municipality joined the fire fighting efforts.

"George Fire Brigade sent a tanker this morning, Monday, 26 April 2021, to Oudtshoorn to assist in combatting a wildfire that is currently active and smouldering in the Greater Oudtshoorn Municipal area near the Raubenheimer Dam," said the George Municipality in a post earlier today.

"The tanker is currently utilised to provide the fixed bomber planes with water," George Municipality added.

 

PICTURE: Supplied - Water bombing plane filled.

Done By: Mitchum George

No decision, yet, on public schools to operate on 100% capacity

The Western Cape Education Department (WCED) says education officials will put forward a proposal to the National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC) for a 100% capacity to South Africa’s public schools.

The NCCC is expected to meet soon to discuss the possibility of a complete return to the classrooms in the second term.

According to the Western Cape’s Head of Education, Brent Walters, no decisions have been made as to whether there will be changes to the requirements made previously in the directions regarding capacity at schools and physical distancing.

‘’Until then, all schools are to continue to adhere to the directions in terms of regulation 4(3) of the Regulations made under the Disaster Management Act, 2002 (Act 57 of 2002), published in Government Gazette No. 44154 of 12 February 2021. It is attached for reference and was issued by the Department of Basic Education. It states the following:

“Schools with large enough facilities to comply with health, safety, and social distancing requirements do not have to change their traditional and daily timetable models. and may continue to operate in accordance with those timetable models.” Said Walters.

Walters says that should a school wish to have 100% attendance, then they must apply to the district for permission to do so.

‘’The approval of such an application is dependent on whether the school has enough facilities, safety materials and the necessary procedures in place, that comply with all the relevant health and safety protocols.’’

‘’Existing Temporary Revised Education Plans still apply until such approval is given. Should there be any change to the directions, it will be communicated to schools as soon as possible.’’ Walters added.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

Six deaths in three separate incidents over the weekend

In three separate incident during the weekend six people have died, amongst them a three year old. A 19 year old driver has been arrested following a fatal crush from drinking and driving. It is alleged on Sunday at 5:30 in the morning, the family members were driving two separate vehicles, when the accident with another vehicle took place. Resulting in the death of four family members aged between three and 32 years old, meanwhile the other four sustained serious injuries and reside in the hospital. The teen is to appear in court today, charged with driving under the influence of alcohol.

On a different accident on Saturday night, a driver was killed in another crash on the R33, Greytown Road, when a taxi and a bakkie were involved in a collision.

Meanwhile Gwala said that a case of culpable homicide was being investigated by Nyoni SAPS. Of an accident that took place on Friday, where three vehicles were involved in a collision on the N2 freeway. A 39-year-old woman was declared dead at the scene, while others sustained injuries and were taken to hospital for medical attention.


by Everngelista Muza

Community Safety MEC laments after a number of LGBTQIA+ community was attacked and killed

The Western Cape’s Community Safety MEC, Albert Fritz, expressed his concern at the unacceptable proliferation of gender-based violence.

Fritz was lamenting after a number of members of the LGBTQIA+ community have been attacked and killed across the country. The latest being 22-year-old Lonwabo Jack, whose body was found with stab wounds in a pool of blood in Mau-Mau, Nyanga East.

“Events like this shake me to the core because, as far as I am concerned, these are hate crimes, and it makes me ask serious questions about the ills which are plaguing our society, against which we as a people seem to make little headway.”

According to police, an investigation is currently underway to determine the extent of the crime.

“When we speak of gender-based violence, we include all of those who suffer violence and even death because of societal reactions and perceptions around gender. This therefore includes people like Lonwabo, who suffered this gruesome death on his birthday. Nobody deserves that. And I am not going to rest until we see a drastic reduction in gender-based violence.” Said Fritz.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

18-year-old Ladismith man to appear in court for raping teenage girl

Ladismith police, in the Little Karoo, arrested a 18-year-old man in connection with the alleged rape of a 14-year-old girl on Saturday in Lang Street, Ladismith. 

‘’Preliminary information reveals that the victim was awakened at about 03:30 this morning, Sunday, 25 April 2021 when she realised that the suspects had just raped her.’’ Said the police’s Michael Pojie.

‘’The suspect and his mom were quests of her mother’s. She then woke up his mom that shared a bed with her and reported her ordeal to her. (When they went to sleep, he was laying in a different bed.) The mom of the 14-year-old victim accompanied her to the local police station where they reported the rape this morning.’’ Pojie added.

The police spokesperson said the man is behind bars and is expected to make his first court appearance in the Ladismith Magistrates’ court once charged.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

2 suspects to appear in court after robbing Nyanga fast-food outlet

Two suspects are expected to appear in court on Monday after they robbed a fast-food store in Nyanga on Saturday.

‘’Members of the national Public Order Police attached to Lockdown II forces were in the vicinity of Nyanga Junction Mall on Saturday afternoon when they were alerted by community members to a robbery in progress at a fast foods outlet in the area.’’ Said Brigadier Novela Potelwa.

‘’When they approached the business they saw two suspects running away and pursued them. The suspects got into a Toyota Avanza vehicle that drove towards Govan Mbeki Road. The members caught up with the vehicle and arrested the two suspects and seized two imitation firearms.’’ Added Potelwa.

The two faces charges of business robbery and the possession of imitation firearms.

 

Picture: SAPS



Done By: Mitchum George

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

SASSA APOLOGISES FOR GRANT PAYMENT DELAYS

 

Sassa has apologized for the inconvenience caused due to late grant payment

Grant beneficiaries are yet to receive their grant for last month aswell as April

Sassa has advised that the delay is due to it having to complete it’s Financial year tasks

Sassa Spokesperson Paseka Letsatsi has assured beneficiaries that they will receive a double payment at the end of the month

President Cyril Ramaphosa announced at the State of the Nation address that, Cabinet has decided to extend the COVID-19 TERS benefit until 15 March 2021 and only for those sectors that have not been able to operate. And that The conditions of this extension and the sectors to be included will be announced after consultations with social partners at Nedlac.”

 

Done by Lizeka Tsotetsi

Phase 2 of the vaccination will go ahead as planned

 Health Minister Zweli Mkhize has confirmed that phase 2 of the vaccination plan will go ahead as planned.

Minister Mkhize recently visited hospitals in Mitchells Plain to ensure theat they are prepared for phase 2, which begins next month.

The Health Department said that it is preparing to vaccinate 5.5 million people over the age of 60 by October. They are aiming to vaccinate as many people as possible before the possible third wave.

Phase two will start from mid-May until the end of October. During which they plan inoculating 16 million people.

Health Minister Zweli Mkhize said that all the paperwork and contracts with Johnson & Johnson and Pfizer had been concluded.

 

By Danielle Mentoor

Monday, April 19, 2021

Tender boat capsizes in Struisbaai

 On Sunday, a tender boat carrying seven fishermen capsized close to Struisbaai. It resulted in one of the men drowning and another is being treated for hypothermia. Sea Rescue services arrived on the scene after all seven men made it to shore, unfortunately they were unable to save an adult male.

The South African Police Service (SAPS) will investigate the death of the male after a death inquest docket have been opened, as is standard in all such incidents.

Reinard Geldenhuys, NSRI Agulhas station commander, said: “At 07h00, Sunday, 18 April, NSRI Agulhas duty crew were activated after receiving a call for a mass drowning in progress in Struisbaai harbour with multiple casualties reported to be in the water. NSRI Agulhas crew and rescue swimmers responded directly to the harbour with medical gear.”

By Danielle Mentoor

 

Friday, April 16, 2021

Registration for COVID-19 vaccine goes live at 4p.m for over-60s

South African citizens over 60 years of age, who want to receive a Covid-19 vaccine will now be able to register through the Electronic Vaccination Data System (EVDS) from 4pm on Friday.

Health Minister Zweli Mkhize officially launched the Covid-19 Electronic Vaccination Data System on Friday morning.

“This launch marks a significant milestone not only for our vaccination campaign but for South Africa’s advancement towards Universal Health Coverage.’’

To register, citizens must have their ID, medical aid card and ensure they put in the correct cellphone number and residential address where they live. 

The launch forms part of the preparations for the second phase which is expected to start from 17 May to the end of October.

 

To register:

(1)  Go to the EVDS portal to register: https://vaccine.enroll.health.gov.za/#/

(2)  Follow the steps on the portal and complete your details.

(3)  You will receive a SMS to confirm your registration

(4)  When it is your turn to be vaccinated, you will receive a SMS informing you when and where you will be vaccinated.


Done By: Mitchum George

R10m budgeted towards sanitary pads for schools in the Western Cape

The Western Cape’s Social Development Department has budgeted R10.5 million towards the Sanitary Dignity Project (SDP) for the 2021/22 financial year.

The SDP forms part of the department’s ongoing commitment to promoting the dignity of many female learners, who are unable to afford sanitary pads.

At the end of March, a total of 554 508 packets of ten sanitary pads were delivered to approximately 90 000 female learners in 220 schools across the Western Cape through the project.

“I am pleased that this project will continue this year to support female learners who at times find themselves having to miss school due to a lack of access to the necessary menstrual hygiene products.” said provincial Social Development MEC, Sharna Fernandez.

The schools which form part of the Sanitary Dignity Project were nominated by the Western Cape Department of Education based on an analysis of female learner absenteeism from Grades 4 to 12.

These schools include no-fee paying schools and fee-charging schools.

The project also prioritises schools in rural areas and special needs schools-where the need is greatest.

‘’Although further data is still required to directly confirm reasons for absenteeism among female learners, a lack of access to menstrual hygiene resources has been cited as one of the contributing factors.’’ Says Fernandez.

 

PICTURE: WC DSD

Done By: Mitchum George

Three suspects arrested for murder and attempted murder in name of mob justice.

 Three residents of Makhaza in Khayelitsha were arrested for allegedly participating in self-defense justice when five men accused by residents of being involved in criminal activity were beaten and stoned to death.

Two of the men were killed and three others reside in the hospital with serious injuries from the attack.

Police spokesperson FC van Wyk said an investigation by members of the Harare police force led to the arrest on Wednesday. Suspects aged between 27 and 32, were still in custody and are expected to appear in Khayelitsha Magistrates’ Court today for murder and attempted murder. He also further stated the police strongly condemn the act of vigilance in our communities and encourage them to report any criminal activity to the police so that the law can take its course.

Neighborhood councilor Danile Khatshwa said kangaroo courts were spreading to different parts of the area, as residents believed police were inundated with crime. He said that while he understood the community’s frustrations, he did not tolerate mob justice.

 By Everngelista Muza

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Winde suspends Madikizela over 'CV fraud'

Western Cape Premier Alan Winde has suspended Transport and Public Works MEC, Bonginkosi Madikizela for 14 days, with immediate effect, following an investigation about the MEC lying on his CV.

Winde met with Madikizela on Wednesday after the MEC listed a BCom degree on his CV. It's alleged that Madikizela lied about his qualifications.

‘’I met with Minister Madikizela yesterday (Wednesday) afternoon, where I raised my concerns with him and asked for an explanation. During that meeting I made clear that acting with integrity is non-negotiable to me, and to the people of the Western Cape. ‘’ said Premier Alan Winde.

‘’I also made clear that I believe in fairness and due process, where all the facts are properly considered.’’ He added.

Winde said that once he had all the facts, he would make a final decision regarding Madikizela and his role in the cabinet.

Human Settlements MEC, Tertius Simmers, is acting MEC of Transport and Public Works.




Done By: Mitchum George

National State Of Disaster extended to 15 May

Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, has gazetted the extension of the National State of Disaster on COVID-19 until 15 May 2021.

According to the Department, the decision to extend the state of national disaster follows consultations and Cabinet approval.

“We must sustain our commitment to remain responsive, agile and compassionate as we work to save lives and protect the livelihoods of all South Africans,” Minister Dlamini-Zuma said in a statement on Wednesday.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

No Avian Flu detected in Western Cape

The Western Cape’s Agricultural Department says it is on high alert after an outbreak of Avian Flu have been reported in Gauteng.

About 300 birds had died from the virus on the commercial chicken-layer farm in Ekurhuleni.

Avian influenza is a viral respiratory disease of birds believed to be transmitted by wild migratory birds. In Southern Africa, the H5N8 strain of the disease affects the poultry industry.

Ostrich and chicken meat on sale in retail outlets is safe for human consumption.

Western Cape’s Agriculture MEC, Dr. Ivan Meyer said that no such cases have been reported in the province.

‘’There are no such cases reported in the Western Cape. We are thankful that the South African Poultry Association has placed the whole industry on high alert, and appropriate biosecurity contingency plans are being implemented.’’

‘’Farmers and poultry producers are encouraged to heighten their biosecurity measures to prevent potential virus introduction from wild birds or their faeces.’’ Meyer added.

The MEC urged farmers to be vigilant.

‘’It is crucial to keep poultry and other animals away from wild birds and their body fluids through screens, fencing or nets. Commercial poultry operations and backyard poultry owners should avoid introducing the virus through contaminated clothes, footwear, vehicles or equipment used in waterfowl hunting‘’.

Meyer added that Veterinary Services continue to monitor the situation in the Western Cape and will remain vigilant.

For further information, contact the Head of Veterinary Services in the Western Cape, Dr Gininda Msiza, at 021 808 5002 or GinindaM@elsenburg.com

 

PICTURE:
The Poultry Site


Done By: Mitchum George

Khayelitsha residents stoned 2 people for alleged stolen items

Harare police in Khayelitsha, have arrested three suspects on Tuesday who were allegedly involved in the brutal killing of two victims and the attempted murder of three others.

‘’at about 14:30, police attended a scene in 41 Block Makhaza where two victims were stoned to death allegedly by the community members. They were allegedly accused of breaking into the houses and stealing other people’s items.’’ Said the police’s FC van Wyk.

‘’The members of the community got hold of the five and allegedly assaulted them of which two died due to injuries sustained and three were admitted in hospital with serious injuries.’’ He added.

The trio, aged between 27 and 32, will appear in the Khayelitsha Magistrate’s court on Friday.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Social on an uproar on mental health following recent suicides

 A Grade 10 Limpopo schoolgirl has been reported to have committed suicide, the Mbilwi Secondary School pupil was reported to have overdosed on prescription pills.

This follows a recent video circulating on social media of 15 year olf, Lufuno Muvhungu seen repeatedly slapped by a Grade 10 pupil, while other school girl cheered on. Limpopo police spokesperson, Brigadier Motlafela Mojapelo, said police had opened an inquest docket after Mavhungu’s alleged suicide.

In a different case an investigation has been opened after a Bellville detective sergeant who is believed to have shot himself was his office on Tuesday morning.

Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) spokesperson Charlton Johnson said the work done by police members often left them exposed to trauma, not much else could be said about what led up to the death of the 48 year old man.

In a different incident that also took the whole of South Africa by storm was the death of Anele “Nellie” Tembe, the fiancée of SA rap star AKA. Who allegedly jumped from the 10th floor of a Cape Town hotel

While neither the Tembe family or AKA have confirmed or denied that Nellie had been suffering from mental health issues, social media had sparked the talks on mental health also encouraging many people to come forward and share their own stories of depression and suicide.


By Everngelista Muza

SA halts J&J vaccine

South Africa will suspend the rollout of the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine over blood clot fears.

This was announced by Health minister, Dr. Zweli Mkhize who was speaking at a media briefing on Tuesday night after the U-S Food and Drug Administration advised a temporarily suspension of its rollout of the J&J vaccine after six women developed “unusual blood clots”.

Mkhize emphasised that there were no reports of blood clots after vaccination in South Africa and that the decision to halt the J&J vaccine was just a “precautionary decision”.

Mkhize was confident that there would be more answers “over the next few days”, before additional supplies of the vaccines arrived on SA shores next week.

The City of Cape Town’s Health Department has recorded just more than 1 300 Covid-19 vaccinations of healthcare workers and support staff. This equates to more than 40% of eligible healthcare workers.

‘’The vaccination drive is critical to ensuring that our frontline workers are safe, and able to continue delivering primary and environmental health services to our communities.’’ Said Mayco member for community services and health, Dr. Zahid Badroodien.

‘’They have been under immense pressure over the past year, and deserve our ongoing support and acknowledgement of the important role they play in our response to the pandemic.’’ Added Badrrodien

 

Done By: Mitchum George

Eerste River learners taught under tree, placed in schools

The Western Cape Education Department (WCED) says it has placed half of the learners at a school after they had class in an open field in Forest Village, Eerste River, Cape Town.

In a statement, the WCED says it has been contacting parents over the past week to make offers of placement.

“The WCED has been contacting parents over the past week to make offers of placement. Half of the learners have already been placed at schools,” said Education MEC Debbie Schäfer.

‘’However, the department is still struggling to contact some of the parents of the remaining learners, who have provided incorrect contact numbers or whose phones go to voicemail. We urge the parents of those learners to contact their district to take up the placement offers,” she added.

The “makeshift school”, who they’ve even named – Empumelelweni Primary and High School – which consists of five classes and has 480 learners started operating on 16 February.

Schäfer said they are working hard to place the remaining learners in the province that are still not placed.

“Obviously, this remains a concern for us that they are still not in a school,” she stressed. 

According to the MEC, the number has reduced from 13 800 at the beginning of the year to 3 786 (as of Wednesday, 14 April 2021).

Schäfer said this is not due to a lack of planning or effort on the part of the WCED.

“We have warned for years of the pressure that we are under… We are nonetheless doing everything we can to try to accommodate the increase this year as best we can.”

 

Done By: Mitchum George

~R3m worth of abalone seized in Bishop Lavis

Two suspects aged 23 and 43 are expected to appear in the Bishop Lavis Magistrates Court soon, after they were found with R3million worth of abalone.

PHOTO: SAPS


‘’Tactical Response Team arrested two abalone poachers yesterday (Tuesday). The members reacted on intelligence of an abalone drying facility situated in Bremen Road in the Airport industrial area, Bishop Lavis and conducted a search operation, which led to the discovery of wet and dried abalone and drying equipment with an estimated value of R3 million.’’

 
PHOTO's: SAPS



Traut added that two vehicles were also confiscated.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

No load shedding forecasted for Wednesday, says Eskom

Eskom says it is NOT expecting to implement load shedding on Wednesday, as it says, ‘’have enough generation capacity’’.

The ailing parastatal implemented load shedding between 9p.m on Tuesday until 5a.m on Wednesday, after a generation unit, each at the Tutuka, Medupi and Hendrina power stations tripped, but those units have since recovered.

Eskom says a further 2 generation units are expected to return to service later today.

It added that emergency generation reserves were also sufficiently replenished.

The power utility urged consumers to use electricity sparingly, ‘’as the system remains vulnerable and unpredictable’’

“As previously communicated, the possibility of load shedding remains elevated while Eskom continues to implement reliability maintenance, and as such the system will continue to be constrained during this period.” Eskom said in a statement.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

Monday, April 12, 2021

Rapper's Fiancé fall to death

 The fiancé of well known musician Kiernan “AKA” Forbes has been reported to have fallen to her death.

22 year old Anele “Nelli” Tembe was reported to have fallen to her death, with soecualtions going around that she committed suicide. The incident took play at the five-star Pepperclub Hotel in central Cape Town on Sunday.

Tembe apparently fell from the 10th floor of the hotel early on Sunday morning.

Netcare 911 spokesperson Shawn Herbst. “She was in a critical condition and they started a full life-support resuscitation. Unfortunately her injuries were too severe and she was declared deceased on the scene.

Witnesses who were staying at the hotel described to TshisaLIVE how they had heard a woman screaming, followed by a loud “doef” sound — and then a man shouting. The police are investigating

The families said in a joint statement issued on Sunday afternoon. “She had a sweet nature about her and was always nurturing to those about her.We are still in shock and dealing with our emotions, as she was an exceptional and gifted young woman with so much life ahead of her”.

The statement from the families said: “Forbes is now inconsolable and is surrounded by family and [his] closest friends.”

Off-duty police officer's body found with several gunshot wounds in Vryrgond

Cape Town police are probing the shooting of a police officer whose body was found with several gunshot wounds on Sunday morning in Disa Street, Vrygrond.

The incident took place on Sunday at about 1.40am.

Police spokesperson Captain FC Van Wyk said it was established after further investigation that the officer was an off-duty sergeant stationed at Steenberg SAPS.

“The suspect/s fled the scene and are yet to be arrested.  The motive for the shooting is unknown,” he said.

Anyone with information regarding the shooting incident can contact Muizenberg SAPS on 021 787 9000 or Crime Stop on 08600 10111.

 

Done By: Mitchum George

R3m drugs destined for Jo'burg seized in Cape Town suburb

Cape Town police uncovered a R3million drug haul destined for Johannesburg.

The police’s Novela Potelwa said members of the provincial integrated team and Rapid Rail police unit followed up on information about the massive drug exchange on Saturday evening.

She said the team observed boxes being offloaded from one vehicle into another. They then pursued the vehicle bearing the consignment and stopped it along Robert Sobukwe Road in Ravensmead.

PICTURE: SAPS


“After searching the vehicle, the police discovered 75,000 Mandrax tablets with an estimated value of R3m,” said Brig. Novela Potelwa.

PICTURE: SAPS


“A 29-year-old male was arrested. He is expected to appear in court on Monday on charges of dealing in drugs,” added Potelwa.


Done By: Mitchum George


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